Merck & Co. sued over Gardasil HPV vaccine deceit
By Mary Villareal // Oct 08, 2021

Attorneys for Baum Hedlund and co-counsel Robert F. Kennedy have filed a lawsuit against New Jersey-based Merck & Co. for knowingly hiding the fact that its Gardasil HPV vaccine can cause multiple autoimmune diseases.


The lawsuit has been filed on behalf of Hayden Shain in the Superior Court of the State of California, Los Angeles County.

Gardasil HPV vaccine victim speaks out

Shain has decided to get the Gardasil HPV vaccine when he was 15 years old – a decision that haunts him and his mother to this day. (Related: Increasing number of parents refusing HPV vaccine for daughters.)

"When I think back on the day I received the Gardasil shot, I remember that if this vaccine is 'effective' and it will 'limit the impact of HPV,' I want to do the right thing for my health and take it. I had no idea how destructive it would be. If I knew the risk I was taking, if I knew this is what my life would become, there's no way I would've said yes to the shot," says Shain.

He has experienced body pain, headaches, brain fog, insomnia, weakness and trouble talking since taking the vaccine. He has also required constant medical attention.

His doctors have treated him for gastrointestinal issues, chronic fatigue, difficulty concentrating, anxiety and other neurological disorders. He continues to suffer from these symptoms and is bedbound most of the time, with his physical and cognitive limitations having a devastating effect on his daily life.

What is an HPV vaccine?

Human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the U.S. and is spread through intimate skin-to-skin contact. They are very common, and nearly all men and women will get at least one type of the virus at some point in their lives.

Infections that do not go away can cause cervical, vaginal and vulvar cancers in women and penile cancer in men. It can also cause anal cancer, cancer of the back of the throat and even genital warts.

There is only one licensed HPV vaccine in the U.S., Gardasil 9, which is recommended for all preteens ages 11 and 12 to protect them from HPV infections that can cause cancer later in life. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that pre-teens should receive two doses of HPV vaccine six to 12 months apart.

The lawsuit against Merck specifically points to the company actively concealing the fact that Gardasil can cause autoimmune diseases such as myalgic encephalomyelitis, chronic fatigue syndrome and other symptoms that Shain now suffers from.

The complaint has also alleged that Merck knowingly concealed these diseases in reports by Gardasil clinical trial participants, by listing them as "new medical conditions." That deceit has helped the company gain fast-track approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Baum Hedlund Law has also stated that the Gardasil clinical trials were "negligently and poorly designed" to test its long-term safety and efficacy. One of the key reasons for this is that the investigators are able to use the new metric called "new medical conditions" to describe adverse effects that the clinical trial participants suffered from.

Roughly half of the clinical trial participants have been found to have this "new medical conditions" description. Some of the conditions are serious enough to require surgeries.

After Merck received FDA approval for Gardasil in 2006, the number of adverse events associated with the HPV vaccine skyrocketed, with more than 64,000 adverse event reports recorded on FDA's Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS).

Get more news related to vaccine injuries reports at

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